The number of successful retail chatbot interactions will reach 22 billion by 2023, up from an estimated 2.6 billion in 2019, according to Juniper Research.
Key here are improvements in NLP (Natural Language Processing), which will dramatically reduce the failure rate of interactions, by making them more natural and valuable for customers. Juniper anticipates that retailers who do not adopt chatbots will face strong challenges from more technologically-adept disruptors looking to boost their omnichannel offerings.
Chatbots leveraged for customer service also have a strong potential to reduce costs, with deployments realising annual savings for retailers of $439 million globally by 2023, up from $7 million in 2019. This will act as a key ‘pull’ factor, given the margin pressure that many retailers are presently feeling.
Meanwhile, retail sales resulting from chatbot-based interactions will reach $112 billion by 2023, up from $7.3 billion in 2019. These sales will, however, largely be a result of migration from other channels. So while retailers must adopt this technology, their return on investment will come from efficiencies, rather than new income.